In a (partial) challenge to Guy Debord’s infamous assertion, ‘wandering in open countryside is naturally depressing’ (1956), participants were invited to take part in a psychogeographic game. Players were able to choose a folded creative prompt or two (or more) and follow it or them if they so wished, with the only rules concerning safety, respecting other people’s desire for silence if signalled, and stopping if the game ceased being enjoyable.
In November 2016, Ceri Morgan led a geopoetics workshop in Silverdale Country Park to commemorate the anniversary of the Aberfan Disaster. In October 1966, a colliery spoil tip collapsed on Pantglas Junior School in the South Wales village, killing most of the pupils and teachers inside. Having a family connection to the event, Morgan wanted to pay tribute to the victims and survivors of Aberfan and other mining disasters. She also wanted to celebrate the cultural heritage of the coal-mining industry. A small group of undergraduate and postgraduate students, lecturers, parish councillors, an archivist, a former miner and his wife spent an hour at Country Park, former site of a coal mine. Afterwards, several participants wrote, revised, or composed texts based on the experience.
In November 2017, extracts from the revised creative texts, along with photographs and extracts from informal oral history interviews with some of the participants were exhibited at Silverdale Community Library. A launch with readings and performances was attended by a mixture of Keele staff and students, local residents, and former miners.
This day-long workshop featured paper presentations, a geopoetics walk, readings, a writing retreat and a zines workshop by Molly Drummond.
The Dawdlers took up the practice of collective tweets undertaken by colleagues at la Traversée (with permission). In Summer 2017, we collectively tweeted creative writing on the themes of parks and gardens, using #dérive. These were often retweeted by our Montreal colleagues at La Traversée.
I wanted a garden. So my father made me one. July days; a gift of love (Ceri Morgan)